There aren’t many cities like Budapest. The Hungarian capital is an excellent mix of incredible architecture, proud heritage and a vibrant social scene. Bisected by the Danube River, either side of the water possesses their own personality. On the west, Buda is hilly and home to many of the city’s historic sightseeing destinations. Springtime temperatures make for perfect conditions to embark on a hike up Buda Hill for panoramic views of the river and Pest to the east. Here, you’ll find the spectacular neo-gothic Matthias Church, the seven spires of the Fisherman’s Bastion and the Hospital in the Rock, a former hospital built in secret under the castle before WWII.
In comparison, across the Lion-guarded Széchenyi Chain Bridge, Pest is flatter and where you’ll find bustling cafés, restaurants and Ruin Bars. Wander along the sweeping tree-lined boulevards, taking in the impressive architecture, and witness the magnitude of the Hungarian Parliament Building as it looks truly magical lit up at night.
Budapest’s bathing heritage dates all the way back to Roman times and has become an integral part of the city. Experience the soothing, restorative waters of one of the city’s many thermal baths after a thrilling day of sightseeing and enjoy living as the locals have for centuries.
Visit Budapest on our 5-day Tastes of Imperial Europe itinerary. This shorter itinerary is perfect for first time river cruisers, introducing you to the most iconic sights and landmarks of Europe’s best-loved rivers.